A vigil was held in Sydney on May 4 in solidarity with Hodan Yasin, a 19-year-old Somali asylum seeker. She is in a critical condition after setting herself on fire in Australia's notorious offshore refugee detention centre on the Pacific island state of Nauru. Just a few days before people had assembled in the same spot in Sydney Town Hall square for a vigil for Omid, a young Iranian asylum seeker who died after also setting himself on fire in Nauru.
It is amazing the conversations one overhears sometimes. I was attending a vigil for Omid Masoumali, the young asylum seeker who died a few days after he set himself on fire in Australia's notorious refugee detention camp in Nauru. The atmosphere at the vigil was sad and tense. Among those at vigil were two young women quietly holding flickering candles. Another woman holding a Teachers for Refugees banner asked the young women: “What school are you from?” “I am not at school,” replied one of the young women.